March 29, 2016
U.S. ousted in Olympic bid by Colombia
FRISCO, Texas -- The U.S. seemed to have everything going for it in its playoff series against Colombia for the final Olympic Games berth Tuesday night. But the U.S. failed to build on the 1-1 result it had obtained in Barranquilla last week, falling to the Colombians, 2-1, and missing out on the Olympics for the second successive time.
Roger Martinez, who plays for Racing in Argentina, scored in the 30th and 64th minutes for the Colombians, the U.S. getting a 58th-minute own goal, before 7,998 fans at Toyota Stadium.
Colombia changed its striker pairing, going with Guillermo Celis (who had played for the national team in Bolivia in CONMEBOL World Cup qualifying last week) and Martinez, with Juan Fernando Quintero in support. The Colombians produced most of the first-half chances and carried momentum into the second half.
Martinez threatened early, Ethan Horvath making a diving save in the sixth minute. Following a short corner, Horvath made a spectacular save on Yerry Mina’s diving header in the 18th minute.
Martinez converted his first goal just inside the right post after Andreas Roa drilled a left-footer into the goal area off a Helibelton Palacios cross.
But the U.S. tied the score, defender Deiver Machado heading into the Colombia goal as Emerson Hyndman lofted a pass for substitute Jerome Kiesewetter.
Machado compensated by setting up the deciding goal. Machado went forward on the left, centering for Martinez, who controlled near the penalty spot, then avoided central defender Tim Parker and finished past Horvath.
The U.S., needing at least two goals to advance, went forward but lost Luis Gil to a second caution in the 77th minute. U.S. defender Matt Miazga was red-carded by Uzbek referee Ravshan Irmatov, after committing a foul as the last man, in the 90th minute.